"Treat others the same way you want them to treat you. If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same." Luke 6:31-33
Today I am mindful of the great tragedies that have befallen residents of Texas and Oklahoma last week. Much has been reported and is still being reported about the terrible loss of life and property including those elementary school students whose lives were taken by the horrific storms that impacted the area. I am likewise mindful of the proclivity we as human beings have to help one another in a time of need. The news reports showed that there were so many first responders trying to get in the area that they had to hold them off until they could clear a path for them. Organizations like the Churches of Christ Disaster Response Team (http://www.churchesofchristdrt.org/#!currentlocation/c10d6) reacted immediately and are already amassing volunteers, food and materials for the moment when volunteers are allowed into the area. Even members of our own congregation are in the process of packing up tools, coolers and materials to drive to Oklahoma and lend a hand.
Beloved, it is at times like these when it is most critical that we exemplify the love of Christ by being a part of the effort to provide relief to those who are suffering. Imagine what it would be like to have your whole world blown apart. Your first response would likely be to cry out to God for mercy and help. Should we not then be the presence of God when others are suffering? We truly have the ability to be the answer to someone's prayers.
While we may not all be able to travel to Oklahoma or Texas to hammer nails, serve food or lend a shoulder to cry on, we can help others who can by donating materials, the use of vehicles or tools, food and funds. And never let us forget the awesome power of prayer. I encourage us all to put ourselves in the position of those impacted and do what we would have them do if it were us. It may be that through the power of God and through our efforts, not only can a home be restored and a heart soothed, but it may be that souls can be saved. Through our love, some will see God.